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NASA to launch ‘Mars mission’ on Blue Origin’s New Glenn

Jeff Bezos-led Blue Origin scored a big contract from the American space agency, Nasa, to launch a mission to Mars. The private space company was given its first interplanetary NASA contract to launch the mission to study the magnetic field around the Red Planet. The expected launch date for the mission is 2024.

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Blue Origin’s New Glenn heavy-lift rocket:

NASA to launch 'Mars mission' on Blue Origin's New Glenn_40.1

The mission, dubbed the dual-spacecraft ESCAPADE, will be launched next year on Blue Origin’s recently developed New Glenn heavy-lift rocket. The mission will lift off in late 2024 from the Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida. The mission is part of Nasa’s Small Innovative Missions for Planetary Exploration (SIMPLEx) program.

New Glenn, with a reusable first stage designed to be flown on at least 25 missions, is named for pioneering NASA astronaut John Glenn, who became the first American to orbit Earth in 1962. Blue Origin has flown previous NASA missions with its smaller, suborbital New Shepard rocket, which can carry research payloads on short, microgravity trips to the edge of space and back.

About The ESCAPADE:

NASA to launch 'Mars mission' on Blue Origin's New Glenn_50.1

ESCAPADE is a twin-spacecraft Class D mission that will study solar wind energy transfer through Mars’ unique hybrid magnetosphere. “Blue Origin was on-ramped to the NASA VADR launch services Indefinite Delivery Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) contract on January 26, 2022, with a five-year period of performance,” the Bezos-led company said in a statement.

It will take the identical twin ESCAPADEs, short for Escape and Plasma Acceleration and Dynamics Explorers, about 11 months to reach Mars orbit.

NASA to launch 'Mars mission' on Blue Origin's New Glenn_60.1
NASA to launch 'Mars mission' on Blue Origin's New Glenn_70.1

 

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